Coming off a bye week with a 2-4 record, the Titans made a significant trade by sending All-Pro safety Kevin Byard to the Eagles.
Following this move, the Titans are preparing for an unconventional quarterback strategy in Week 8.
Coach Mike Vrabel stated that both Malik Willis and Will Levis are expected to see action against the Falcons.
However, if Ryan Tannehill is unable to play due to an ankle injury, the rookie Malik Willis is likely to start.
There’s even a possibility of alternating between Levis and Willis by series, although Vrabel did not officially confirm Tannehill’s absence.
When Tannehill was injured during the Titans’ loss to the Ravens in London, Malik Willis was the first to step in.
While Willis served as Tannehill’s backup for much of the previous season, he initially faced challenges adapting to the NFL.
Despite this, he secured the QB2 role over Levis for this season. However, the Titans are now giving the second-round rookie, Will Levis, a more extended opportunity than before, according to Ian Rapoport.
The Titans find themselves in the unique position of developing two quarterbacks as alternatives to Tannehill.
Malik Willis is considered a developmental prospect but didn’t pose a threat to Tannehill’s position last season.
His initial struggles prompted the Titans to sign Josh Dobbs late last year and use him as a starter in Weeks 17 and 18.
Notably, Willis was acquired under the previous general manager, Jon Robinson, while the new GM, Ran Carthon, selected Will Levis in April.
The Titans were closely linked to trading up for a quarterback in the first round and even engaged in discussions with the Cardinals to move up to the 3rd overall pick.
While C.J. Stroud was believed to be their target, the Texans picked him at 2nd overall, causing the Titans to change their plans.
Ultimately, they selected guard Peter Skoronski at No. 11 and secured Levis, who was rumored to be a first-round pick.
Will Levis had garnered interest from the Colts, who were considering him at the 4th overall pick.
However, the Colts might have misled their intentions to select Anthony Richardson instead.
Levis, a two-year starter at Kentucky, didn’t make it into the first round, unlike other top QBs in his class who received starting opportunities in Week 1.
The Titans had prepared for the possibility of Tannehill’s absence during their bye week, as he had missed parts of the previous season due to ankle trouble.
Vrabel compared Tannehill’s current injury to the one he sustained midway through the last season, rather than the one that required season-ending surgery in December.
With Tannehill in the final year of his Titans contract, the extended playing time for Levis this season may lead to further trades from the Titans, who made cost-cutting moves in the offseason.